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Nagasaki mayor calls for shift away from nuclear energy

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I agree with the mayor but first things first we have to get rid of our dependence on OIL.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Japan is an island with almost no natural resources for energy purposes and has a castrated military. While many people seem to be against Nuclear power these days they are also short on alternatives. Nuclear is here to stay. Get used to it.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

@whiskeysour So no Oil and no nuclear energy.....I am at the edge of my seat waiting to hear your viable energy solutions that will power an entire nation and its economy.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

warablinkoblinko or whatever you call sign is

First of all, dont pounce on my comments if you dont understand what I`m talking about.

The Oil Industry controls the world. They are holding all the keys to new technological alternatives.

Read up on the Oil Industry please before making another comment.

Read !!!! Ganbatte

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

While many people seem to be against Nuclear power these days they are also short on alternatives.

That's not true at all. There's plenty of talk of renewables -- wind, solar, etc. Then there's geo-thermal, which japan's geography is capable of producing. Germany's renewable rate is 17%: Japan can do the same once the vested interests, who have doled out subsidies to the nuke industry, are squashed.

Then there's conservation. Japan needs to assume that electricity is finite, hence, it needs to get rid of its silly consumption of it. Sliding electric doors in millions of shops, self-flushing toilets, and many other completely useless things whose job is to gobble up power need to go.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Japan needs to assume that electricity is finite, hence, it needs to get rid of its silly consumption of it. Sliding electric doors in millions of shops, self-flushing toilets, and many other completely useless things whose job is to gobble up power need to go.

100% agreed with you!!

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Your numbers are outdated. Germany was already at more than 21% last year, while the goal they had set for themselves was only 20%. It's fully realistic to assume that this number might soar at 40% or more in a decade or so. Japan is way behind that, but they could reach 20% until 2025 or so without difficulty if they really wanted and cut electricity consumption by at least 5 to 10% without any real economic loss or loss of life quality. After all, energy efficiency will become also important for export success, won't it?

You should be aware of the concept of "wind gas" developed in Germany. The basic idea is to use carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, water and energy produced at peak times from renewable sources (which is so much that it doesn't fit into the normal power grid). You use these three things to chemically produce methane and oxygen and store the methane in the old depleted natural methane storages.

That is fuel which can be used in gas driven power plants or even in cars. In principle, You can easily upgrade all car models from gasonline to gas, which costs about 2000 Euro in Germany. In the aftermath, gas is cheaper than gasoline and burns cleaner. The effect is burnable fuel which is effectively CO2 neutral, since the same carbon dioxide has been taken from the atmosphere already.

There are plenty of possibilities out there. However, the first obstacles for Japan are to overcome their laziness, their wasteful consumption and corruption through the nuclear village.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

the first obstacles for Japan are to overcome their laziness, their wasteful consumption and corruption through the nuclear village.

EXACTLY!!!!! Thank You~~

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Ther other day I went to a super market and i carried an expensive hand held gieger counter to check the vegetables i was considering to buy...but when I heard some clicks from the deviceI changed my mind. I asked the staff where the veggies were from and she said Ibaraki...they are sneaking in this s--t... 54 nuke plants are far too many along the coast of an earthquake prone country...If a cataclysmic earthquake hits enoung of those plants J-land would be finished and I wonder if all us gains would be able to make it out in time. A cataclysmic earthquake would practically destroy Japan economic position, but a nuke spill on that scale would be a man made suicidal catastrophe. Why take the risk... Show leadership and change energy sources, before its too late...Forget about military position, there are plenty of US bases here.

Those guys in the black trucks, i.e. right wing, zaitokukais, etc are blowing smoke up the gullible JN's....we are in a global networked world now, and such nonsense will only go so far....

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

shift away from nuclear energy means pushing technology beyond existing limit. not too much for japan?

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Japanese song called “Never Again.”

This would not appear to be the viewpoint ofTokyo governor Ishihara, who yesterday called for Japan to carry out nuke tests. Another remarkable bit of timing from the corrupt old gimp.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

JeffLee: Good comment. I AM seeing a little bit of restraint in terms of power consumption, but my guess is it's much like a Beckham haircut -- a passing trend that will soon be gone. You are 100% correct, though -- there are a million and one ways this nation could cut back on consumption, but they won't.

warallthetime: I don't think anyone is suggesting that ALL nuclear plants be shut down tomorrow. Even the mayor here is saying there needs to be a 'shift' away from it, meaning a gradual weaning off of the nuclear teat. What else can they do? A number of things. True, Japan has no natural resources such as oil or what have you, but they do have nature, and hence the resources, to focus on alternative energy: we have the sun, the wind, the water, and the heat from below. Start with geo-thermal energy and mass production of solar panel tech., and put massive wind turbines on the mountains. It's not the cure, but it's a start, and if research is conducted honestly and with the aim of ridding ourselves of nuclear power, it'll be done. Thing is, the people that control the research have vested interests, such as in oil or the electric companies with nuclear tech. It'll take one more disaster like we have now in a short time to force these companies to rethink their cost-cutting techniques and move on to something else.

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Same question as before: "How did everyone get to the ceremony?" If the answer is subway, electric bus, local train or shinikansen, the question is mute. Japan needs all the nuclear energy it can produce. It was the tsunami - NOT the earthquake - that caused Fukushima's problem. Poor planning? Maybe. But not the earthquake. Japan needs all of its nuclear power and more. It just has to be smarter about producing it.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

It was the tsunami - NOT the earthquake - that caused Fukushima's problem.

I think it has been accepted by now that the damages to at least some of the reactors were cause by the earthquake and not the tsunami. Also many of Japans reactors are aging and becoming brittle by the neutron radiation, this makes them more sensitive to earthquakes by each year. Do a search for nuclear reactor DBTT, if you don't know what I am talking about.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I AM seeing a little bit of restraint in terms of power consumption, but my guess is it's much like a Beckham haircut -- a passing trend that will soon be gone.

Indeed. On Saturday, I saw 2 halogen spotlights burning away outside a real estate office -- in the middle of the afternoon. Look around, and you'll see that people are still using electricity like it's water.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I think it has been accepted by now that the damages to at least some of the reactors were cause by the earthquake and not the tsunami.

That the reactors at Fukushima were severely damaged before the tsunami hit has been pretty well established by now. And, it is evident that that old guidelines that determine how much shaking the nuclear facilities can withstand were grossly mis-underestimated. The Genkai plant, which is near Nagasaki, would pose an immediate threat should its facilities be disabled by a large-scale earthquake, and I believe there are large amounts of plutonium stored at Genkai as well.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genkai_Nuclear_Power_Plant

1 ( +1 / -0 )

we need nuke / it's here to stay

would you live next to one ? get real you fools

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sorry to be a broken record, but don't forget hydrothermal, using the temperature difference that already exists below the waves to save the equivalent electricity in cooling. (Google: Deep Lake Water Cooling Toronto). Thus you use the properties of nature, not using nature up, allowing it to be recycled again. A concept as regular consumers haven't figured out yet.

For a nation like Japan, surrounded by ocean and with most of it's major cities on the shoreline, this could be a booming industry market ripe for export and a job creator ($$$).

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Since government is all about talk but not action, I'd suggest making a local interest group and getting businesses on board. If technical interests are bridged it could be a means of saving money bit by bit. Like the single solar thermal laundry mat here. It's the only one, but there's no reason why.

It's all about the public interest encouraging the business case. If you can do your part to support it in your community then businesses can jockey for that interest for business advantage as well as savings from wasted energy.

don't wait for government, establish those interests now, they way you like them, before the old boys do.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@noriyosan73

If the answer is subway, electric bus, local train or shinikansen, the question is mute.

Just an F.Y.I., mute questions make no sound. The term you were looking for was "moot". :-)

Japan has every right to move away from nuclear energy production in it's current state because the process DOES rely on a lot of things going right in order to prevent a disaster. Any sane individual would be concerned about what could go wrong at a fission nuclear power plant. As has been shown, even when a reactor does a programmed SCRAM (emergency shutdown) successfully, there are weeks before the plant REALLY goes "cold". Interrupt the cooling process and those "weeks" turn into months/years.

So lets go over Japan's other options: They could increase their oil/natural gas power plants, but then they would have to correspondingly increase their oil/natural gas imports to run them. The technology is there and the worst a natural disaster could cause is a large fire at the plant.

Hydroelectric via dams is possible, but I would think Japan has already dammed-up any locations where hydroelectric power was viable/safe. Dams would be very susceptable to earthquakes, though, and I understand Japan gets a few of those every year. ;-) An alternate hydroelectric possibility would be tidal. Tides move in and out twice a day, rain or shine, day or night. Put a bunch of tidal generators just offshore and have them feed storage batteries onshore. They would be immune to earthquakes and any tsunami action would make them briefly work even BETTER at power generation. With the execption of during the aforementioned tsunamis, power generation would be a constant, known value that can allow efficient planning for demand.

Wind power is available, but not to the point where its supply can be planned with any accuracy. Even when the wind is blowing (and it doesn't always blow) it rarely blows at a consistent rate. Wind would be a nice supplemental source, but as a primary source wind power leaves much to be desired.

Ditto for solar power. First of all, solar power from photovoltaic cells will be affected by time of year, cloud cover, and of course whether it's day or night. Solar power from hydrothermal sources will also be similarly affected by time of year and, to a lesser extent, cloud cover and time of day/night. A good supplemental source, but will probably never be consistent enough to qualify as a primary source of power.

Geothermal is an interesting option for Japan and one I'm surprised they haven't already put into full production.

The only truly safe nuclear power is from fusion reactors, but those are still in the experimental stages and scientists have only been able to "maintain" a fusion reaction for no more than a second. If they ever successfully created a sustained fusion reaction, all other forms of power generation would go the way of the wood stove.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The only truly safe nuclear power is from fusion reactors, but those are still in the experimental stages and scientists have only been able to "maintain" a fusion reaction for no more than a second. If they ever successfully created a sustained fusion reaction, all other forms of power generation would go the way of the wood stove.

The last part of your sentence is the exact reason why it probably doesn't get any decent funding. The nuclear fission industry would be done with and look very awkward.

To all the people who think going nuclear (fission that is) is the solution to all our forthcoming energy problems: if we would go all out nuclear to replace all other sources of energy we would blow the entire stock pile of uranium of the world in no more than 20 years. Maybe you should read http://peakoil.com/production/exploding-the-myth-of-nuclear-energy-security/.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I think he's a day light and a dollar short. Popular thing to say these days, but he's been beat to the punch about a million times.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Thank you, Fadamor. A "double entendre" is sometimes difficult to comprehend. THE DISCUSSION ABOUT THE DAILY USE OF ELECTRICITY IS SILENT. Just imagine working in a high rise building where the A/C temperature has been changed again. It is already hot in the offices, department stores and subways. If anyone thinks that Japan can move away from nuclear energy in the 21st century, he or she is too idealistic to be part of the solution.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

shift away from nuclear energy means pushing technology beyond existing limit

@michael, I agree with your post here.

Japan is filled with smart scientists and engineers, so this will force them to do more on R&D to come up with innovations, thus stimulating J. economy.

I am very confident that Japan can achieve this goal.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

I can't believe it's only been 66 years since the bombing. I am so sorry that happened to you folks. It should never, ever happen again.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Japan has almost no natural resources ...

So where are you gonna get the uranium from, which is necessary to fuel nuclear power plants? Worldwide uranium reserves are said to last only for 25 more years at constant consumption. Same as oil, you cannot expect uranium prices to drop in future. So, what are you gonna do then?

Not to mention that Japan has no place to put all that highly radioactive waste, which will still radiate for thousands of years, after the last plant has been shut down. Who is gonna pay for that?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The Japanese goverment should offer tax credits to individual homes or businesses that invest in solar panels. It would help in a small scale for long term energy problems in Japan. The goverment could offer generous 25-35 percent in tax credit by deferring over 5-10 years. Some families that are able will accept. What if you have 5000 homes in Japan signing up annually? This would mean 40,000-50,000 homes that might be more self sufficient in 10 years, comparing to doing nothing. The excess energy that is produced by the individuals or business can be sold to utility companies. Most solar panels have a payback time of about fifteen years. Solar panels, wind turbines, and all other green energy may sound nice, but they are very expensive and inefficient.

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Is anyone else sick and tired of the mayors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki using the rememberence days of atomic bombings as a soap box to promote changing the county's domestic and international policies?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Fadamor

Thank you for a very well written and thought through post. I only have one comment regarding:

First of all, solar power from photovoltaic cells will be affected by time of year, cloud cover, and of course whether it's day or night.

While this is technically true, I think what most people are missing is the fact that the periods where solar produces the most energy ( i.e Hot summer days) coincides well with peak demand for electricity in Japan. Thus it is actually a quite good match for the needs of this country.

Additionally , I hope and think that energy storage technology will be a sector of great development in the next couple of years. I'm thinking both local small scale storage close to the user (which will also provide a backup when the infrastructure breaks down) and large scale at strategic locations.

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Just to make things clear, I am not suggesting that solar should be the only solution. Just like Fadamore and others suggest, we will need a mixed bag of goodies. Unless someone quickly conjures up a way to sustain fusion.

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"Have we lost our awe of nature?", Apparently so.

Japan is an island with almost no natural resources for energy purposes But, you see, this is the defeatist attitude that brought us to where we are now. The first thing that comes to my mind when I see Japan on a map is how it is surrounded by oceans. Now in case you have not spent any time down at the shore, the one thing that I notice when I go there is the constant movement of waves and wind and water. Sometimes it's so loud and so strong that you can't carry on a conversation with the person next to you. I wonder if that is something that we could use to move an electrical generator. The second thing that I see is the many mountains rising up from the sea and since it does rain here quite often there must be some rivers running back to the sea. I wonder if we built a dam or two if we could harness the power of the water there to turn a couple generators. Well, then, and since many of those mountains are volcanic and volcanoes are pretty hot inside, how about using geothermal technology to make a little steam in our kettle? So, wonder of wonders, maybe there are some "natural" resources here that could be used for electrical production. Take a minute and think, I'm sure we can do this without killing ourselves.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Thank you, Fadamor. A "double entendre" is sometimes difficult to comprehend. THE DISCUSSION ABOUT THE DAILY USE OF ELECTRICITY IS SILENT. Just imagine working in a high rise building where the A/C temperature has been changed again. It is already hot in the offices, department stores and subways. If anyone thinks that Japan can move away from nuclear energy in the 21st century, he or she is too idealistic to be part of the solution.

Interestingly, this summer Japan is not relying heavily on nuclear, in fact 35 of the 54 reactors are offline. There are reductions in electricity (vague claims from the power companies), but it is unclear as to how necessary nuclear really is (Is nuclear 10%, or 15% of Japan's electric supply this summer? This could easily be replaced.)

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It is funny how J-gov politicians offer no concrete solutions, but rely on pointing fingers to gain popularity.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

CactusJack, you could have removed "J-gov" from your comment and it still would have been accurate though I'm not sure I would use the term "funny" to describe them. "Criminal" is the term that I would want to use.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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